Shah Waliullah Dehlawi

Quṭb ad-Dīn Aḥmad Walī Allāh ibn ʿAbd ar-Raḥīm al-ʿUmarī ad-Dihlawī (Arabic: قطب الدين أحمد ولي الله بن عبد الرحيم العمري الدهلوي‎‎; 1703–1762), commonly known as Shah Waliullah Dehlawi, was an Islamic scholar, muhaddith reformer,[2][3] historiographer, bibliographer, theologian, and philosopher.

Shah Waliullah Dehlawi
TitleShadow of wisdom
Born21 February 1703
Died20 August 1762 (aged 59)
Delhi, India
Resting placeMunhadiyan[1]
NationalityIndian subcontinent, under Mughal Empire
MovementRenaissance in Indian Muslim Community
Main interest(s)Quran, Hadith, Tafsir, History, Bibliography, Revolution, Fiqh, Military strategy, Sufism
Notable work(s)Translation of the Quran into Persian Language
Al-Fauzul Kabeer
Al-Akidatul Hasanah
Majmua Rasail Imam Shah Wali Ullah
OccupationMufassir, Muhaddtih, Historiographer, Bibliographer, Theologian, Philosopher, Academic, Linguist, Sufi
Senior posting

Early life

Shah Waliullah was born on 21 February 1703 to Shah Abdur Rahim, during the reign of Aurengzeb. He was known as Shah Walliullah because of his piety. He was a prominent Islamic scholar of Delhi. He memorized the Qur'an by the age of seven. Soon thereafter, he mastered Arabic and Persian letters.[4] He was married at fourteen.[4] By sixteen he had completed the standard curriculum of Hanafi law, theology, geometry, arithmetic and logic.[4]

He lived during the time when Fatawa-e-Alamgiri[5] was being compiled and he was asked to join the team of scholars that was working on it. However he joined the team for a very brief period of time and then dissociated himself from the task.

His father, Shah Abdur Rahim was the founder of the Madrasah-i Rahimiyah. He was on the committee appointed by Aurangzeb for compilation of the code of law, Fatawa-e-Alamgiri.[6] His grandfather, Sheikh Wajihuddin, was an important officer in the army of Shah Jahan.

He had a son who was also a famous religious scholar, Shah Abdul Aziz. He went to Arabia to do Hajj.

Death and legacy

He died on Friday the 29th of Muharram 1186 AH/ 20 August 1762 at Zuhr prayer in Old Delhi, aged 59.

His works relate to aqidah and fiqh Hanafi. He states:

Some people think that there is no usefulness involved in the injunct of Islamic law and that in actions and rewards as prescribed by God there is no beneficial purpose. They think that the commandments of Islamic law are similar to a master ordering his servant to lift a stone or touch a tree in order to test his obedience and that in this there is no purpose except to impose a test so that if the servant obeys, he is rewarded, and if he disobeys, he is punished. This view is completely incorrect. The traditions of the Prophet and consensus of opinion of those ages, contradict this view.[5]


  • (The Sacred Knowledge), ed. D. Pendlebury, trans. G. Jalbani, The Sacred Knowledge, London: Octagon, 1982.[7]
  • Al-Khayr al-kathir (The Abundant Good), trans. G. Jalbani, Lahore: Ashraf, 1974.[7]
  • Hujjat Allah al-baligha (The Profound Evidence of Allah), Lahore: Shaikh Ghulam Ali and Sons, 1979. Considered his most important work. First published in Rae Bareily, India in 1286 Hijri.[8] This book explains how Islam was found suitable for all races, cultures and people of the world and how successfully it solves social, moral, economic and political problems of human beings.
  • Sata'at (Manifestations), trans. into Urdu by S.M. Hashimi, Lahore: Idarah Thaqafat Islamiyya, 1989; trans. into English by G. Jalbani, Sufism and the Islamic Tradition: the Lamahat and Sata'at of Shah Waliullah, London.[7]
  • Lamahat (Flashes of Lightning), Hyderabad: Shah Wali Allah Academy, 1963; trans. G. Jalbani, Sufism and the Islamic Tradition: the Lamahat and Sata'at of Shah Waliullah, London, 1980. (One of the important writings on Sufism.)[7]
  • Fuyud al-haramayn (Emanations or Spiritual Visions of Mecca and Medina).[7]
  • Al-Tafhimat (Instructions or Clear Understanding), Dabhail, 1936, 2 vols. (One of the most comprehensive metaphysical works.)
  • Al-Budur al-bazighah (The Full Moons Rising in Splendour).

Besides these, he is also credited being the first to translate the Quran into Persian in the Indian subcontinent.[3]

Shah Walliullah worked hard to ensure that he was a role model for other Muslims. His deep understanding of the Qur'an, Hadith, Fiqah and Tasawwuf made him highly knowledgeable scholar at an early age.

Since he believed that an emphasis of the Quranic teachings was made vital to Muslims, he translated Arabic Qur'an into Persian. Few Muslims spoke Arabic and so the Qur'an had not been widely studied previously. Some clerics criticised Shah Walliullah, but his work proved very popular. In addition to translating the Quran, Shah Walliullah wrote 51 books in Persian and Arabic. Amongst the most famous were Hujjat Allah al-Baligha and Izalah al Khifa.

His writings bought him great fame and prestige and enabled him to have influence in other areas too. One of his most important contributions to the Muslim community was his organisation of opposition to the Maratha Empire, who had captured large parts of India which belonged to the Mughal Empire before and had reduced the Mughal emperor to a mere puppet. It was partly his influence which helped to persuade Ahmed Shah Abdali of Afghanistan to intervene. He joined forces with local Muslim leaders and defeated the Marathas at The Battle of Panipat in 1761.

He felt a debt to the Sufis for spreading Islam throughout India. He also appreciated Sufi spirituality. Waliullah built a bridge between Sufis and the Ulama (Islamic scholars).[9]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Kunju, Saifudheen (2012). "Shah Waliullah al-Dehlawi: Thoughts and Contributions": 1. Retrieved 5 April 2015.
  3. ^ a b Abbas, Mohammad. "Shah Waliullah and Moderation". Islamic Research Foundation International, Inc. Islamic Research Foundation International, Inc. Retrieved 5 April 2015.
  4. ^ a b c A.C. Brown, Jonathan (2014). Misquoting Muhammad: The Challenge and Choices of Interpreting the Prophet's Legacy. Oneworld Publications. p. 28. ISBN 978-1780744209.
  5. ^ a b "Biography : Shah Waliullah (RA)". Darul Ihsan Islamic Services Centre. Darul Ihsan Islamic Services Centre. Retrieved 5 April 2015.
  6. ^ Anil Chandra Banerjee. "Two Nations: The Philosophy of Muslim Nationalism". p. 44. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  7. ^ a b c d e "Shah Wali Allah (Qutb al-Din Ahmad al-Rahim) (1703-62)". Muslim Philosophy. Retrieved 5 April 2015.
  8. ^ "Shah Wali Allah". Center for Islamic Sciences. Center for Islamic Sciences. Retrieved 5 April 2015.
  9. ^ K.J. Ahmed, Hundred Great Muslims, Library of Islam, 1987.
  • K.J. Ahmed, Hundred Great Muslims, Library of Islam, 1987.

‘Aql (Arabic: عقل‎, meaning "intellect"), is an Arabic language term used in Islamic philosophy or theology for the intellect or the rational faculty of the soul or mind. It is the normal translation of the Greek term nous. In jurisprudence, it is associated with using reason as a source for sharia "religious law" and has been translated as "dialectical reasoning".


Azariqa (Arabic الأزارقة, al-azāriqa), The strongest and the most extremist branch of Khawarij, who follow the leadership of Nafi ibn al-Azraq al-Hanafī al-Handhalī.


Batiniyya (Arabic: باطنية‎, romanized: Bāṭiniyyah) refers to groups that distinguish between an outer, exoteric (zāhir) and an inner, esoteric (bāṭin) meaning in Islamic scriptures. The term has been used in particular for an allegoristic type of scriptural interpretation developed among some Shia groups, stressing the bāṭin meaning of texts. It has been retained by all branches of Isma'ilism and its Druze offshoots. The Alawites practice a similar system of interpretation. Batiniyya is a common epithet used to designate Isma'ili Islam, which has been accepted by Ismai'lis themselves.Sunni writers have used the term batiniyya polemically in reference to rejection of the evident meaning of scripture in favor of its bāṭin meaning. Al-Ghazali, a medieval Sunni theologian, used the term batiniyya pejoratively for the adherents of Isma'ilism. Some Shia writers have also used the term polemically.

Darul uloom

Darul Uloom (Arabic: دار العلوم‎, transliterated dar al-ʿulūm), also spelled darul ulum etc., is an Arabic term which literally means "house of knowledge". The term generally means an Islamic seminary or educational institution—similar to or often the same as a madrassa or Islamic school—although a darul uloom often indicates a more advanced level of study. In a darul uloom, Islamic subjects are studied by students, who are known as Tulahb or Ṭālib.

The conventional darul ulooms of today have their roots in the South Asia, where the first darul ulooms were founded by the Indian Islamic scholars (ulema) of the past. Darul ulooms followed—and today continue to follow—the age-old Islamic curriculum known as the Dars-e-Nizami syllabus, which has its origins in the Nizamiyya Islamic schools of the Seljuk Empire, but was developed in the South Asia under Islamic thinkers and ulema, such as Shah Waliullah Dehlawi. The Dars-e-Nizami syllabus comprises studies in Tafsir (Qur'anic exegesis), Hifz (Qur'anic memorisation), Sarf and Nahw (Arabic syntax and grammar), Persian, Urdu, Taarikh (Islamic history), Fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence), Shari'ah (Islamic law) etc.


Deobandi (Pashto and Persian: دیوبندی‎; Urdu: دیوبندی‎; Bengali: দেওবন্দি; Hindi: देवबन्दी) is a revivalist movement within Sunni (primarily Hanafi) Islam that started in South Asia. It is centered in India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh, has spread to the United Kingdom, and has a presence in South Africa. The name derives from Deoband, India, where the school Darul Uloom Deoband is situated. The movement was inspired by scholar Shah Waliullah Dehlawi (1703–1762), and it was founded in 1867 in the wake of the First War of Indian Independence in northern India a decade earlier.

Izalatul Khafa'an Khilafatul Khulafa

Izalat al-Khafa'an Khilafat al-Khulfa (ازالة الخفاء عن خلافت الخلفاء; lit. 'Removal of Ambiguity about the Caliphate of the [Early] Caliphs') is a book by the Islamic scholar Shah Waliullah Dehlawi in the Persian language.


Jahmī (Arabic: جهمي‎) was a pejorative term used especially by early Hanbalites to refer to the followers of Jahm ibn Safwan (d. 128/746). In the modern era it is also used by followers of Salafism against Muslims who believe the Quran is a created thing, not the eternal speech of Allah.

List of Hanafis

The following is the list of notable religious personalities who followed the Hanafi Islamic madhab, in chronological order:

Abu Hanifah

Abu Yusuf

Muhammad al-Shaybani

Abdullah ibn Mubarak

Zufar Ibn Hudhayl

Abu Ja'far al-Ṭaḥāwī

Yahya ibn Ma'in

Said al qattan

Waki ibn jarrah

Abu Hafs Umar an-Nasafi



Abu Mansur Al Maturidi

Ali al-Qari

Ali Hujwiri

Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi

Farid al-Din Attar

Ibn Abidin

Baha-ud-Din Naqshband Bukhari

Abd al-Ghani al-Nabulsi

Ibrāhīm al-Ḥalabī

Moinuddin Chishti

Faridudin Ganjshakar

Nizamuddin Auliya

Sheikh Abdul Haq Muhaddith Dehlawi

Badr al-Din al-Ayni

Ahmed Sirhindi

Shah Waliullah Dehlawi

Shah Abdul Aziz Dehlawi

as-Sadr ash-Shaheed

Imam Khassaf

Abul Hasan al-Karkhi

Shashuddin al-Hulwani

Shamsul A'immah al-Sarakhsi

Fakhrul Islam al-Bazdawi

Fakhruddin Qazi Kahan

Abu Bakr al-Zassas ar-Razi

Imam Hakim Shaheed

Shaikh ibn al-Humam

Allamah Tahtaawi

Abu Hussain al-Quduri

Khayr al-Din al-Ramli

Ibn Kamal Pasha

Shaikh Abdul Wahhab ibn Wahban

Imam Hasan ibn Zyad al-Kufi

Imam Muhammad ibn Sama'ah

Mu'alla ibn Mansur ar-Razi

Abu Sulaiman al-Jozjani

Shaikhul Islam Khwahar Zadah

Abu Z'afar Hinduwani

Ibn Nujaim

Muhammad ibn Muhammad al-Kardari

Qasim ibn Qutlubugha

'Alauddin Haskafi

Allamah Tumurtashi

Allamah Kasani

Mufti Abu-Sau'd Afandi

Faqih abullayth Samarqandi

Imam Abd al-Hayy al-Lakhnawi

Ala HazratMawlana Shah Ahmad Raza Khan

Mawlāna Muhammad Qasim Nanotawi

Mawlāna Majid Ali Jaunpuri

Maulana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi

Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi

Muhammad Mian Mansoor Ansari

Imam Muhammad Zahid al-Kawthari

Shaykh al-Hind Mawlāna Mahmud al-Hasan

Imam Anwar Shah Kashmiri

Shaykh al-Islam Maulana Shabbir Ahmad Usmani

Mawlāna Hussain Ahmed Madani

Maulana Syed Muhammad Miyan Deobandi

Maulana Murtaza Hasan Chandpuri

Maulana Syed Fakhruddin Ahmad

Mawlāna Manazir Ahsan Gilani

Mian Asghar Hussain Deobandi

Maulana Izaz Ali Amrohi

Mawlāna Aashiq Ilahi Bulandshahri

Muhammad Zakariya Kandhlawi

Maulana Saad kandhlawi

Anzar Shah Kashmiri

Muhammad Salim Qasmi

List of Muslim theologians

This is an incomplete list of notable Muslim theologians.

List of Sunni books

This is a list of significant books of Sunni Islam doctrine.

Madrasah-i Rahimiyah

The Madrasah-i Rahimiyah is an Islamic seminary located in Delhi, India. It was founded by Shah Abdur Rahim, the father of Shah Waliullah Dehlawi, during 18th century.. After the death of Shah Abdur Rahim in 1718 Shah Waliullah started teaching at the Madrasah. It became a leading institute of Islamic learning and was acknowledged as the most influential seminary in the Indian subcontinent. Later, when Shah Wali Ullah died, his sons Shah Abdul Aziz, Shah Rafi and Shah Abdul Qader began teaching here, with Abdul Aziz becoming its principal. Following the death of Abdul Aziz, the leadership of the Madrasah passed on to his son Shah Muhammad Ishaq. Following Muhammad Ishaq's death in 1846, the Madrasah broke up into a number of interlinked schools.

Mahmud Hudayi

Aziz Mahmud Hudayi (1541–1628),

Aziz Mahmud Hudayi is a descendant of Junayd of Baghdad, he is a Sayyed being descendant of Hussein Ibn Ali. He is therefore a Hashemite of origin. This is taken from a governmental foundation in Turkey.

(b. Şereflikoçhisar, d. Üsküdar), is amongst the most famous sufi ermiş (Muslim saint) of the Ottoman Empire. He was a mystic, poet, composer, author, statesman and Islamic scholar.

Religious thinkers of India

India has been home to a large number of religious thinkers and spiritualists. The most important of such religious thinkers include Buddha, Guru Nanak, and Mahavira. Buddha and Guru Nanak were the founders of the Buddhist and Sikh religions respectively. Mahavira was the last Jain Tirthankara.

Shah Abdur Rahim

Shah Abdur Rahim(Ur شاہ عبدرھیم Hn शाह अब्दुर्रहीम) (1644-1719) was a sufi Saint and a scholar who assisted in the compilation of Fatawa-e-Alamgiri, the voluminous code of Islamic law. He was the father of the Muslim philosopher Shah Waliullah Dehlawi. He became a disciple of Khwaja Khurd son of Khawaja Baqi billah a revered Sufi of Delhi.

He established Madrasa Rahimiyya in Delhi, a theological college which later played a part in the religious emancipation of Muslim India and became the breeding ground of religious reformers and mujahideen like Shah Waliullah and Shah Abdul Aziz.

Shah Waliullah (disambiguation)

Shah Waliullah may refer to:

Shah Waliullah Dehlawi, 18th century Indian Islamic scholar and reformer

Shah Waliullah Adeeb, current governor of Badakhshan, Afghanistan

Shah Wali Ullah Nagar, neighborhood in Orangi Town in Karachi, Pakistan


The Sufris (Arabic: الصفرية‎ aṣ-Ṣufriyya) were Khariji Muslims in the seventh and eighth centuries. They established the Midrarid state at Sijilmassa, now in Morocco.

In Tlemcen, Algeria, the Banu Ifran were Sufri Berbers who opposed rule by the Umayyad, Abbasid and Fatimid Caliphates, most notably under resistance movements led by Abu Qurra (8th century) and Abu Yazid.The Khawarij were divided into separate groups such as the Sufri, Azariqa, Bayhasiyya, Ajardi, Najdat, and Ibadi. Only the Ibadi continue to exist today.

Syed Nazeer Husain

Syed Nazeer Husain Dehlawi (1805–1902) was a leading scholar of the reformist Ahl-i Hadith movement and one of its major proponents in India. Earning the appellation shaykh al-kull (teacher of all, or the shaykh of all knowledge) for his authority among early Ahl-i Hadith scholars, he is regarded, alongside Siddiq Hasan Khan (1832–1890), as the founder of the movement and has been described as "perhaps the single most influential figure in the spread of the Ahl-i-Ḥadīth".

Uthman bin Ali Zayla'i

Uthman bin Ali Zayla'i (Arabic: عثمان بن علي الزيلعي‎) (d. 1342) was a 14th-century Somali theologian and jurist from Zeila.

Waliullah (name)

Waliullah, also spelled Valiullah, Valiollah (Arabic: ولي الله‎) is used as a male Muslim and Bahá'í given name, meaning friend of God. It may refer to:

Shah Waliullah Dehlawi (1703–1762), Indian Islamic scholar and reformer

Valíyu'lláh Varqá (1884-1955), Iranian Bahá'í leader

Syed Waliullah (1922-1971), Bangladeshi novelist, short-story writer and playwright

Valiollah Khakdan (1923-1996), Azerbaijani-Iranian art director

Valiollah Fallahi (1931-1981), Iranian general

Valiullah Faiz Mahdavi (ca. 1978-2006), Iranian political prisoner

Muhammad al-Mahdi , the 12th Imam of Shia Muslims

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